Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Are There Differences in Achievement Between Boys and Girls?

State Test Score Trends Through 2007-08, Part 5: Are There Differences in Achievement Between Boys and Girls?
Center on Education Policy: March 2010

WASHINGTON—March 17, 2010—A new study from the Center on Education Policy (CEP) that analyzes state assessment data by gender finds good news for girls but troubling news for boys. According to CEP’s study, the lagging performance by boys in reading is the most pressing gender-gap issue facing our schools. In some states, the percentage of boys performing at proficient in reading is more than 10 percentage points below that of girls. And that trend is consistent at the elementary, middle, and high school levels, the study finds.

The story is different in math, however. At the proficient level, the number of states in which girls outperformed boys was roughly equal to the number of states in which boys outperformed girls. At the advanced level, 4th-grade boys outperformed girls in most states.

The study, State Test Score Trends Through 2007-08: Are There Differences in Achievement Between Boys and Girls?, analyzed trend lines that began in 2002, where available, and ended in 2008. Trend data were included only where at least three years of comparable test data for a particular subject, grade, and achievement level were available. The study includes data for all 50 states and is the fifth in a 2009-10 series of CEP reports on student achievement results.

“Our analysis suggests that the gap between boys and girls in reading is a cause for concern,” said Jack Jennings, CEP’s president and CEO. “Much greater attention must be paid to giving boys the reading skills they need to succeed in early grades and throughout their education.”

Overall in reading, the CEP study finds that many states have made progress in narrowing gaps between male and female students. For example, gaps in elementary school reading have narrowed in 24 states though they have widened in 14 states. The findings in grade 4 reading also find that while both boys and girls have made progress since 2002, more girls than boys reached all three achievement levels—basic, proficient, and advanced—in 2008.

Full Report
2008 Math Snapshot by Gender
2008 Reading Snapshot by Gender
State Profiles


The Center on Education Policy is a national, independent advocate for public education and for more effective public schools. The Center helps Americans better understand the role of public education in a democracy and the need to improve the academic quality of public schools.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Library Advocacy: Florida

ALL FL State Aid Funding For Public Libraries To Be Eliminated
LISNews Librarian And Information Science News: March 11, 2010 — Blake

On March 10, appropriations committees in the Florida House and Senate adopted positions eliminating all funding for Florida’s State Aid to Public Libraries program. This devastating action will result in some Florida library branches closing and will seriously cripple libraries’ ability to serve Floridians. Libraries have already taken their share of local and state budget cuts. This will be especially damaging to libraries in Florida’s rural communities, as these libraries rely heavily on provisions in the program that help communities with lower tax bases. READ MORE !

Monday, March 8, 2010

Share A Story 2010

Share a Story – Shape a Future 2010
March 8 - 12
It Takes a Village

Share a Story - Shape a Future is a blog event for literacy. Throughout the week, blogging librarians, teachers, parents, authors, illustrators and people passionate about literacy will offer ideas on ways to promote reading and books. You won't find statistics, academic analysis, or judgments that tell you why you should read. Instead, we are using the power of the Worldwide web to share ideas about ways to engage kids as readers.

Day1 - The Many Faces of Reading
CHANGE Host: Terry Doherty @ Scrub-a-Dub-Tub

Topics of the day will encompass the relationship aspect of helping children learn to read: parent-child and teacher-parent partnerships, literacy outreach; and libraries, to name a few.

Day2 - Literacy My Way/Literacy Your Way
Host: Susan Stephenson @ Book Chook

Creative literacy in all its forms (writing, art, computers) will be the topic of the day.

Day3 - Just the Facts: The Nonfiction Book Hook
Host: Sarah Mulhern @ The Reading Zone

This is the day for exploring the different genres of nonfiction (biography and memoir, science, nature, math, etc), as well as the use (or not) of historical fiction.

Day4 - Reading Through the Ages: Old Faves & New Classics
Host: Donalyn Miller @ Book Whisperer

Topics include "boy books" and "girl books," as well as newer titles that fit with some classics we loved as kids.

Day5 - Reading for the Next Generation
Host: Jen @ Jen Robinson's Book Page

Join us as we talk about how to approach reading when your interests and your child's don't match. It may be that you don't like to read but your child does, how to raise the reader you're not, and dealing with the "pressure" of feeling forced to read.

Reading is Fundamental is donating two full sets of its Multicultural book collection for our It Takes a Village giveaways! There are 50 books in each set.

The Giveaway is tied to the Writing on Reading initiative, and here is how it will work.
1. Select one of the Writing on Reading questions.
2. Put together your thoughts and post them on your blog.
3. Come back to the daily Writing on Reading post and add your link to Inlinkz box AND add a comment with the name of the school or public library you would like to see receive the books.

Each day, RIF staff will be reading your posts and will select their favorite posts. See Complete Rules

Monday, March 1, 2010

Read Across America: March 2

Read Across America Day - March 2
Celebrate Dr. Seuss' Birthday !

sponsored by the National Education Association

A troubling chapter: Schools, under increasing pressure with cutbacks, find new ways to make books available for students. Denver Post: February 21, 2010 by Carol Eron Rizzoli

March 2 is Read Across America Day, the day that the National Education Association calls for every child to be reading in the company of a caring adult. Unfortunately, in some towns and cities — including Denver — there are children and families who don't have any books and won't be able to participate.

This sad situation came to my attention by way of my daughter, Amanda, who had landed her first teaching job in a Denver elementary school. Equipped with a master's degree and student-teaching experience in Detroit, she was nonetheless distressed. She had never heard of a school without a library.

. . . . . . . . . .

All this, I might add, was before fiscal cutbacks in education became front-page news nationwide. In California, a proposal is now pending to close all the school libraries in Pasadena. Municipal libraries, which kids might turn to when the school library is inadequate or nonexistent, are also in trouble, with reductions in staff, acquisitions funds, and library hours.

In the Denver area, four public libraries closed recently, as have libraries in Detroit and Philadelphia, along with cutbacks in hours and services all over the country, from Hawaii to the well-to-do suburbs of Washington, D.C.

That puts more pressure on the libraries that remain, not just by families who don't have access to books and the Internet at home but by people who are limiting their book purchases as a result of the recession and job losses. Not a pretty picture — though to my mind, school kids need help first. READ MORE !

Oh, the Places You'll Go . . .

Start at Twitter and follow Read Across America tweets, here's a few:

Language_Today: Read Across America tomorrow, Mar. 2nd!!


Librariansview: Celebrate Read Across America Day! with stories and crafts today 10 am Orange Public Library & History Center!

justBurbank: Mar 2 is NEA Read Across America Day. Here are great books to read aloud with your kids. Go to the library & pick one up.

SenatorHagan: In charlotte, Sen. Hagan celebrates Read Across America by reading the cat in the hat to 1st graders at statesville rd elementary

thebplibrary: "6 Days of Seuss" Mar 1st-6th at 4pm in the children's library. Help us celebrate Read Across America!